Gum Disease: What is it and How Do You Stop It?

Neglecting oral hygiene is the leading cause of gum disease. Gum disease simply means that the tissue and bone surrounding the tooth is infected. If not addressed early on, gum disease can spread and result in tooth decay and even tooth loss.

Stages of Gum Disease

There are three stages of gum disease known as gingivitis, periodontitis and advanced periodontitis. The last stage is obviously the most serious and although treatable, it requires aggressive treatment. It is advisable that you visit your dentist as soon as you notice the first sigs of gum disease.

Stage 1: Gingivitis

Gingivitis is often painless and therefore easy to miss. There are however a few warning signs that you may be developing the first stages of gum disease including;

  • Tooth sensitivity

  • Bleeding gums especially when brushing

  • Red and/or sore gums

Fortunately, gingivitis is very treatable and the condition is easily reversible if you seek dental attention soon after noticing any or all of these symptoms.

Stage 2: Periodontist

This is the next stage of gum disease progressing. It is imperative that you visit a dentist urgently if you notice any of these symptoms;

  • Pain during eating

  • Constant bad breath

  • Loose teeth

  • Persistent foul taste in the mouth

  • Pus on gums

  • Receding gum line (your teeth appear bigger)

Although this stage of gum disease is not as reversible as gingivitis, treatment mainly involves curbing the infection so it doesn’t spread and destroy additional tissue. Aggressive treatment is required for this stage.

Stage 3: Advanced Periodontist

Most people don’t reach this stage as the symptoms are often too painful or uncomfortable in the first and second stages. Treatment is still possible but again, the best course of action is to visit your dentist as soon as you notice the first signs of gum disease.

Preventing Gum Disease

Proper oral hygiene and dental care is the first and most important defense against gum disease. Brushing at least twice a day and flossing every day goes a long way to prevent the issue. Make a dental appointment at lease twice every year. The dentist can spot early onset of gum disease even before you begin to experience the symptoms.

It is also important that you are aware of the causes of gum disease. Besides poor oral hygiene, other causes include;

  • Chewing tobacco and smoking

  • Pregnancy

  • Genetics

  • Strong medication such as cancer therapy medication, steroids and calcium channel blockers

  • Diabetes

Remember to practice proper oral hygiene as your first line of defense against gum disease. Make sure that you know how to brush and floss properly, and that you regularly visit the dentist. Gum disease is treatable but it is best to avoid it in the first place whenever possible. 

Posted by: Admin Admin on 2/21/2018
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